By Ingrid VanderGaag (Elora ARPA):
This fall, the Township of Centre Wellington (Fergus-Elora area in Ontario) will have three Canadian Reformed candidates running for council. Each represents a different ward, but will have stiff competition as there are many candidates running this year.
Eric VanGrootheest, whose father was also a councillor in 1990-94, recognizes that first generation Canadians spent a lot of time getting their own associations established and did not have the time to move out into the community. He would like to be involved in changing the ‘Dutch church’ perspective and also desires to readdress the priorities in the community stressing good stewardship of finances and operations.
Jeremy Vink feels that Christians have a duty to be active within the community. Christ and the apostles went out and engaged the community in the public setting and we can learn from that. Interaction is a vital first step for all Christians to share their faith through word and deed. A position within the municipal council would offer an opportunity to influence the community in terms of design, protecting the environment and getting to the heart of social issues. Influencing community and community design by trying to move away from separation and segregation which are the roots of bigger issues (ie – family values) and providing walkable, functional public community spaces to encourage interaction will provide opportunity for Christians to be seen and heard.
Steven VanLeeuwen who has always had an interest in local politics and the operations of the county, took the advice of neighbours and decided to be a candidate. Feeling that he could help the situation of dissatisfied residents of the township, he wants to run an honest and accountable campaign, becoming a witness for the Lord and if successful in becoming a councillor will strive to glorify God’s name in this task.